Navigating COVID-19 as a newcomer

Nov 12, 2020 | Community Stories

When Rafael and Yudy Kainan moved to Canada from Colombia, they hoped to settle successfully. The couple intended to apply for work permits but within two months, COVID-19 hit. All applications made through Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) were suddenly delayed, leaving Rafael and Yudy with many questions.

Working with Settlement Services at CNH, they were able to get help from settlement worker Guadalupe (Lupita) Garcia. “Almost all the process was online,” explains Rafael. “Using WhatsApp or Zoom.”

The couple had been struggling with navigating different documents and rules but working with Lupita changed that.

Rafael was unable to work in Canada so Lupita helped him apply for a first-time open work permit. She helped Yudy extend her study permit, allowing her to work. As neither of them was eligible for government benefits, Lupita helped them to apply for a medical services plan as well and referred them to support programs at CNH.

“In that moment, Lupita helped us with different services,” says Rafael. “Lupita was a wonderful help.”

“I found an answer to all my asks.”

If you or someone you know needs support with newcomer services, contact our settlement team. We have cultural connectors working in the following languages: English, Spanish, Punjabi, Hindi, Tagalog, Cantonese, and Mandarin.

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